Durham Cathedral artist sees the light

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20th October 2014

An artist who once vowed he would never paint Durham Cathedral is set to stage his biggest-ever exhibition in the famous building’s Galilee Chapel.

Stuart Fisher, a Times Watercolour Competition finalist from 2013, is now well-known for his evocative images of the Cathedral. But at one time he said he couldn’t be inspired to paint something that was already so popular among other artists.

Stuart, who lives in Peterlee in County Durham, added: “I worked as an architect in Durham for over 30 years and I suppose I became blasé about the Cathedral. People had always urged me to paint it but I resisted until one day, whilst walking on Palace Green, I photographed it against a lowering black sky. The resulting image was so moody that I saw the building literally, in a totally different light.

“From that point on I was hooked as it really opened my eyes again to its beauty and to how it changes with the seasons. At the end of the day the building will always be the same, but this reawakening has allowed me to keep my interest fresh, as I’m always trying to capture the ever changing atmosphere that brings the structure to life.”

Stuart now regularly photographs Durham Cathedral to capture the unique atmosphere that the changing skies can create. He added: “I’m always looking for something I haven’t seen before, I even go on Google Earth to see the building and the area from above to discover that nook or cranny that I’ve overlooked.”

In recent years, Stuart has exhibited in the Undercroft Restaurant, but in October he will be mounting his largest exhibition in the Cathedral to date in the Galilee Chapel.

The artist said: “It is a wonderful place to exhibit your work and I’ve had sleepless nights in the run up to this new exhibition, not through worry, but just because I’ve been so excited about creating new work for it and seeing it all come together in such a fabulous space.”

The exhibition will feature many of Stuart’s atmospheric paintings of the Cathedral and its environs, as well as work from his recent tour of Europe, which will include scenes from Venice and Rome. All work will be for sale.

Stuart’s exhibition will be on display in the Galilee Chapel from Thursdays 2 to 30 October from 9.30am to 6.00pm.